REVIEW: Cambridge Clarinet Choir perform for 'enthusiastic audience' at Babylon Gallery in Ely

PUBLISHED: 17:23 19 August 2019

Cambridge Clarinet Choir perform for ?enthusiastic audience? at Babylon Gallery in Ely. The concert was conducted by Andrew Webster. Picture: ROSEMARY WESTWELL.

Cambridge Clarinet Choir perform for ?enthusiastic audience? at Babylon Gallery in Ely. The concert was conducted by Andrew Webster. Picture: ROSEMARY WESTWELL.

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Cambridge Clarinet Choir, conducted by Andrew Webster, entertained an enthusiastic audience in the Babylon Gallery on Sunday.

Cambridge Clarinet Choir perform for ‘enthusiastic audience’ at Babylon Gallery in Ely. The concert was conducted by Andrew Webster. Picture: ROSEMARY WESTWELL.Cambridge Clarinet Choir perform for ‘enthusiastic audience’ at Babylon Gallery in Ely. The concert was conducted by Andrew Webster. Picture: ROSEMARY WESTWELL.

The programme was interesting and varied, featuring works by Frigyes Hidas, Paul Custerson, Hubert Giraud, Gustav Holst, Enrique Granados, Belá Kovács, H.Warren and M. Grdon, Jerome Moross, Astor Piazzolla, Saint-Saens and Irving Berlin.

The highlights for me were those special moments when the spirit of the music and the skill of the instrumentalists were at their peak, producing a magical effect.

Such moments included the swaying theme in the familiar 'Sous el ciel de Paris' by Hubert Giraud, a joyful performance of Chattanooga Choo Choo by H. Warren and M. Gordon, the cowboy-like theme in the Allegro of 'Sonatina for Clarinet Choir' by Jerome Moross, Saint-Saens' 'L'Elephant' with a fantastic solo on contrabass clarinet played by Chris Earnshaw and the final 'Let's Face the Music and Dance' by Irving Berlin.

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The group captured the heart of the work perfectly and the rhythm was particularly well delineated and synchronised.

The real star of the event was undoubtedly the conductor with his clarinet solo of 'Hommage a Richard Strauss' by Belá Kovács.

Andrew showed us just how magnificent the clarinet can be. He played rapid runs and speedy leaps over different registers with every note perfectly centred, and with superb tonguing and embouchure.

Soft high notes were exquisite and his absolute precision combined with heightened musicality kept us enthralled.

Cambridge Clarinet Choir performs next in Royston in September and will return to Ely next year.

For more information search Cambridge Clarinet Choir on Facebook.

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